Life is short, art and scholarship are long: a tribute in memory of Professor Willie Oscar Anku.

  • George Dor Senior Lecturer in Music at the University of Dar es Salaam


This tribute, which memorializes Professor Willie Anku, is in two parts. While Part II offers insights from his scholarship on African rhythm, Part I is modeled on a typical Ghanaian eulogy, because I think it appropriate to honor an Africanist with a tribute that draws on elements of his own African culture.


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2003 Representing African Music. Postcolonial Notes, Queries, Positions, New York and London: Routledge.
2005 "Analyzing Gospel Music: Notes on the Rev. James Cleveland's Rendition of 'What a Friend We Have in Jesus'" in Bode Omojola and George Dor (eds) Multiple Interpretations of Dynamics of Creativity and Knowledge in Africa Music Traditions, Point Richmond, CA: Music Research Institute Press, pp. 153-164.
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1988 Procedures in African Drumming: A Case of Akan/Ewe Traditions and African Drumming in Pittsburgh, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh.
1992 Structural Set Analysis of African Music, vol. 1, Bawa, Legon, Ghana: Soundstage Production.
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1995a "Towards a Cross-Cultural Theory of Rhythm in African Drumming", in Cynthia Tse Kimberlin and Akin Euba (eds) Intercultural Music, Vol. 1: 167-202, Bayreuth, Germany: E. Breitinger.
1995b "Creative Processes in African-American Drumming in Pittsburgh and its Relationship to Jazz", International Jazz Archives Journal, i(3):4-27.
1997 "Principles of Rhythmic Integration in African Drumming", Black Music Research, i7(2):2ii-238.
2000 "Circles and Time", Music Theory Online 6, issues/mto.oo.6.i.anku.htl.
2007 "Inside the Master Drummer s Mind: A Quantitative Theory of Structures in African Music", Transcultural Review 11,
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Cuthbert, Michael Scott. 2006 "Generalized Set Analysis of Sub-Saharan African Rhythm? Evaluating and Expanding the Theories of Willie Anku", New Music Research, 35(3):2ii-2i9-
Dor, George W. K. 2004 "Communal Creativity and Song Ownership in Anlo Ewe Musical Practice: The Case of Havolu", Ethnomusicology, 48(i):26-5i.
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1985 "Integrating Objectivity and Experience in Ethnomusicological Studies", Worlds of Music, 27(3):3-22.
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How to Cite
Dor, G. “Life Is Short, Art and Scholarship Are Long: A Tribute in Memory of Professor Willie Oscar Anku.”. African Music: Journal of the International Library of African Music, Vol. 8, no. 4, Nov. 2010, pp. 110-23, doi: